Saturday, April 17, 2010

I Apologize, Google

It wasn't you. It was me. I had a virus. More than one, actually. This one was the dreaded Google Redirect Virus or trojan or whatever the hell it really was. I also had something that was disabling my firewall. Not a good thing. Although it seems OK now I might still have it lurking in the system, ready to pounce on reboot. Actually, I've been very lax on security lately and I've had a few problems and used every kind of security software I'm familiar with and one or two that are new to me and other than Spybot Search and Destroy, which pretty much everyone has anyway, I'm not naming them until I know if we're really OK. Spybot's Tea Timer was what told me I had a problem to begin with, although it wasn't able to clean up the whole mess by itself.

What's kind of interesting, is how various browsers have reacted to the problems and maybe to the cures that have afflicted us in the last few days.

  • Google Chrome, my favorite, upon realizing it was being compromised in such a way committed suicide. Won't work. I uninstalled and reinstalled. Still wouldn't work. Now it won't re-install anymore. I'll try dealing with that more eventually. I think it's going to need therapy to deal with the humiliation.
  • Firefox - Gave into the enemy completely and went right along with the redirection. Didn't even put up a fight. I'm going to call it VichyFox from now on. After fixes were applied behavior is corrected and it's running normally and trying to pretend that this little incident never happened.
  • Safari for Windows - Wouldn't display Google search results while this was going on. Ultimately sacrificed itself, though. It took to freezing up as soon as it loaded after problem was dealt with. Finally had to uninstall.
  • Opera - Was never affected in the least. No redirection when searching on Google and no glitchy behavior before, during or after fixes. Guess which one is my favorite browser now?
  • Internet Explorer - Wouldn't have dreamed of opening it while any of that was going on. As of now it seem to be working normally, which I assume means it'll crash pretty soon because that's still SOP for IE on my system.

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